Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


League Calls For Retention Of Crime Of Sedition

League Calls For Retention Of Crime Of Sedition

The Monarchist League of New Zealand condemns the suggestion of the Law Commission to abolish the crime of sedition. Spokesman Dr Robert Mann saidtThe Monarchist League's view is that if the West does not uphold its values and protect its institutions from physical and verbal attack, it is paving the way for the proponents of sharia law to have their way with us infidels because Islam is active in promoting its way of life & death in liberal democracies where everything is acceptable.

Even for those who haven't noticed the threat from fanatical wings of Islam, the crime of sedition has a continuing function in support of the monarch's relationship with the democratic government - a matter on which Sir Geoffrey has been unduly influenced by his years in the republic of the USA. Sir Geoffrey likens sedition to defamation, which is hardly a true comparison. Civil law is not a good way to handle attacks on the constitution - criminal law is needed.

This is the same Sir Geoffrey who led the abolition of the minor crime 'criminal libel of the lower bench'. While less important than sedition, this crime also had a role in defending our constitutional monarchy against destructive influences.


National StoryRSS --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Lawyers call for abolition of sedition laws Thursday April 05, 2007

Timothy Selwyn was charged with sedition for putting an axe through the PM's electorate office window. Photo / Kenny Rodger The Law Commission has formally called on Parliament to abolish laws which prohibit rebellion against the state or the inciting of lawlessness.

Commission President Sir Geoffrey Palmer said the archaic offence of sedition was too wide and unclear and had been used to muzzle unpopular political speech.

Last year the commission asked for comment on its view that sedition laws should be repealed following police reviving the dormant law.

The review followed Timothy Selwyn being found guilty of sedition after he put an axe through Prime Minister Helen Clark's electorate office window and in a pamphlet called on others to commit similar acts in response to the foreshore legislation.

The Court of Appeal yesterday rejected an appeal for the conviction saying it was sound in law.

The man was also jailed for unrelated charges of benefit fraud, but the case provoked concern about the use of sedition laws.

More recently a barman in Dunedin was charged with sedition after he published a promotional pamphlet offering students the chance to win a petrol-soaked couch and swap a litre of petrol for a litre of beer.

Sir Geoffrey said today after hearing submissions the commission had decided it was "high time" sedition laws were removed from the statutes.

The Commission's report, Reforming the Law of Sedition, tabled in Parliament today recommends the seditious offences set out in sections 81 to 85 of the Crimes Act 1961 be repealed and not replaced.

"Where behaviour that would be covered by the existing sedition provisions needs to be punished, it can be more appropriately dealt with by other provisions of the criminal law," Sir Geoffrey said.

"By abolishing sedition, we will better protect the values of democracy and free speech."

Sedition is a historic law intended to protect the Crown from attempts to undermine its authority. In New Zealand law it also stands as an offence of inciting lawlessness and disorder.

The commission said in its report to Parliament that offences such as incitement to break laws, conspiracy and treason remained in statute and charges of sedition invaded the democratic value of free speech for no adequate public reason.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Ongoing Problems With Abortion

Despite Christopher Luxon’s assurances to the contrary, there is no such thing as “settled law” in New Zealand. Apart from the six provisions that are constitutionally entrenched, legislation can always be amended or overturned by a simple majority vote within our single chamber of Parliament. Luxon’s repeated use of the term “settled law” has been particularly tone deaf, given that several of the US Supreme Court justices used that very same term during their confirmation hearings...


Government: New Measures To Help Manage COVID-19 As Country Stays At Orange
The Government is taking action to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in schools and early childhood services, COVID-19 Response Minster Dr Ayesha Verrall and Associate Education Minister Jan Tinetti announced today... More>>

Prime Minister: Remarks At NATO Summit
It is a rare thing to have New Zealand represented at a NATO Summit. While we have worked together in theatres such as Afghanistan, and have been partners for just on a decade, today represents an important moment for our Pacific nation... More>>

Government: Joint Press Release With President Of The Govt Of Spain Pedro Sánchez & PM Of New Zealand
On June 28, 2022, a meeting took place in Madrid between the President of the Government of the Kingdom of Spain, Pedro Sánchez Pérez-Castejón, and the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, who was visiting Spain... More>>

Greens: Alcohol Harm Minimisation Bill Pulled From Biscuit Tin

After years of research and advocacy, Parliament will finally consider legislation to take meaningful action on alcohol harm, says the Greens... More>>

Government: Wellington’s Rapid Transit Option Progresses To Next Stage
The Government is progressing a preferred option for LGWM which will see Wellington’s transport links strengthened with light rail from Wellington Station to Island Bay... More>>

NZ Republic: Charles CHOGM Speech Green Light For Change
“Prince Charles had made it clear in his speech to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Rwanda today that even the Royal family think it’s time for change” said Lewis Holden, campaign chair of New Zealand Republic... More>>




InfoPages News Channels